Six members of the New York Yankees were named to the American League team for the 2004 All-Star…
Q & A: Michael Morse
Michael Morse: "I was a little shaky. I hadn't played in a while. It feels good, though. Everything went well. We won and that's all that really matters. It felt good to play and I'm just going to try and help the team as much as I can here."
ITP: You've had a breakout season since you started at (White Sox Double-A affiliate) Birmingham. What did the change (the promotion from Single-A) do for you?
Morse: "The higher up you go, the better pitching you see and it's more around the dish. Earlier in my career, I was a real wild, free swinger and I'm starting to learn more about how to hit, you know, mentally more than physically. My swing feels good. I got it there and now I just need to trust myself and trust that I can do it and be the best that I can be. If I keep doing what I need to, success will happen."
ITP: What was it like to learn that you had been traded?
Morse: "It was crazy because I grew up with the White Sox and growing up through the organization. When it happened, it was during our game and things were just running through my mind. The feeling didn't really hit me until I had to drive here from Birmingham and that's when it really hit me. You know, you're going to a whole new organization, all new people, all new coaches and you've got to do everything over again. You project yourself and show these guys that you can play and I'm just going to continue to play 150 percent and hopefully take the route to the big leagues.
ITP: What would you say are your biggest strengths that you bring to the organization?
Morse: "I think my infield. I take pride in infield and that's the one big thing about my game is that I try to be the best out there defensively and I know that if I'm doing well defensively that I'm giving my team a chance in here to get some runs. I'm starting to hit for average, it feels good. I'm starting to swing at good pitches and I've got a lot of power in my swing."
ITP: What would you say would be your biggest accomplishment to achieve this season?
Morse: "Well, the biggest accomplishment would be to get a call to the Mariners. That would be a dream come true, especially coming from the organization that Alex Rodriguez started out. I know Seattle is not scared to have a big shortstop. Hopefully, they'll see good things out of me."
ITP: We've heard of talk that the White Sox were contemplating moving you to either third base or the outfield. Do you want to stay at short, is that your home?
Morse: "I don't see myself moving from short now or ten years from now in the big leagues. Basically what they've told me is what they told me in the White Sox organization is that I'm at short. You can make 50 errors, you're staying at short." The only way that they would move me is if they needed a third baseman to fill in the position or if I started showing them that I couldn't play short anymore. The good thing about my defense is that I've got good range to the side. My defense is really good right now and everybody expects some great things."
ITP: "What did you learn from your time off during the suspension? What lessons can you learn from that time off?
Morse: "Basically, I was able to see the game from the outside and not as a player. When you're on the field everyday and you go 0-for-4, 0-for-5; you're yelling at yourself and getting down, but what it made me learn is to keep your head up. There's always tomorrow. Think about the good things and not the bad things. It was a good 15 day break, but I wish I would have played, but it happens. You just have to stay positive."
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